The arrest of former Governor Mr. Joseph Bangasi Bakosoro: PR Equatoria Leaders in Diaspora

Press Release From: Equatoria Leaders in the Diaspora

Date: 23rd December 2015

Subject: The arrest of former Governor Mr Joseph Bangasi Bakosoro

It has been brought to our attention that Joseph Bangasi Bakosoro, the former Governor of Western Equatoria State, has been arrested and detained by the South Sudan National Security Services on Tuesday 22/12/2015 after he was summoned for a meeting. We Equatorians in the Diaspora are deeply concerned about his arrest, welfare and safety.

This is not the first time the former Governor was harassed and detained by the South Sudan National Security Services. After the signing of the Compromise Peace Agreement in August 2015, he was similarly summoned by the Security Services and was arrested on the 16 August 2015 and detained without any charges. He was released only after concerted efforts from Equatorians within and outside the country and pressure from the International Community. This was soon after he was removed from his position as the Governor of Western Equatoria State by a Presidential decree.

We see this action of arbitrary arrest and harassment of the former Governor as a step by the Government of South Sudan to derail and frustrate the implementation of the peace process.

Given the return of the SPLM-IO into the country as part of the implementation of the peace process and the beginning of a new environment of peace and reconciliation, we feel that the arrest of the former Governor is unfair and counter-productive to realisation of peace and reconciliation.

In addition to the arrest of former Governor Bakaroso, we have learned of the arrest of Dr Leonzio Angole Onek of Juba University by the South Sudan Security Services. He was picked up from the University campus on 7 December 2015 and has not been seen since then. We are concerned about his safety and where about. We view these arrests as another example of systematic targeting of Equatorian leaders and intellectuals.

On behalf of all Equatorians and other peace lovers, we demand immediate and unconditional release of the former Governor, Professor Onek, and others who have been arbitrary arrested without any due legal process.

Contact person

Federico Awi Vuni


  1. Francis mangok says:

    Awut Vuni,
    Whoever against our country sovereignty and regulations is against peace and stability of the country. Western Equatoria State Former Governor is not innocent. Please, we do not want other evil war in South Sudan enough is enough. There are many unusually activities going on in Western Equatoria State. Highlighting of state and cut off from the map of South Sudan is meaning something and it has to be investigated immediate without delay because the more the government delayed investigation the more the problem develop.

    Brother Awi do not involve all the Equatorians leaders and intellectuals only Western Equatorians leaders and intellectuals are problem. Look the map of Western Equatoria State, Central Equatoria State and Eastern Equatoria State are not a part according to the map of Western Equatoria State. Do not mobilize Central Equatoria State and Eastern Equatoria State into your problem.
    Western Equatorians find themselves that they are better than we South Sudanese who have dark- skin. They want to cut off from because we have dark-skin and they have lighter-skin it is a biggest mistake. Sorry to predict that, but it is a reality because the world we are living love the higher-skin more than dark-skin. Example, today our women are bleaching their skin because they see themselves ugly. Some people look our dark-skin ugly and that is stupid illusion . Western Equatorians are like those who see us ugly in South Sudan and they want to cut off from us dark-skinned people of South Sudan. Please, we are natural dark-skin people of God who created this world. God bless South Sudan and I wish you Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

    • Yien Mathew says:

      Hi Equatoria Leaders in Diaspora,

      Iam a Nuer by tribe and the former active member of the SPLM at the Secretariat sector.
      You equatorians are best known in making noise and crying.When Dr.Riek defect to the bush he was followed only by Lado Gore and some individuals who were seeking only positions.But you did not raised up in large numbers to fight for yr right.Your right is to talk much about the ready made food by others.Yr useless noise made Gen.Taban Deng to quarrel with Dr.Machar in the bush bse of appointing Lado Gore as dupty C in C and he does not have Equatorians soldiers on the ground to fight.Right now as soon we are going to form a transitional govt Lado can not get big position than Gen.Taban,we have agreed to give a small post in gov,t and if he does not want then let him revolt if he is a man.Since 1955 up 1983 you Equatorian do not turn up in large numbers and when others fought the war to independent then u claim this is our country all, a country you did not participate.Since we have known you better we Nuers have agreed to better make peace with our Dinkas brothers and share the govt than making allied with weak people like you.
      Best Regards,
      Comarade Yien Mathew

      • Yien Mathew says:

        Yr two weak leaders who have been arrested by the national security deserved death sentence.You can not stay inside and make dealt with us outside.Bangasi Boksoro think he is more cleaver than any one.You can not benefit anything both side but you will remain as looser like Pagan Amuom who also think he is brilliant and intelligent than any one in south Sudan.Bse of Shame he force himself into exile.
        Comrade Yien Mathew

      • info@southsudannation says:

        Yien Mathew,
        You are totally ignorant about history and perhaps a former member of the spoilt Red Army.
        Anyway, for your information, the 1955 Torit Rebellion was entirely an Equatorian affair that was planned and executed by Equatorians. It took place in Torit, Juba, Yei, Maridi, Yambio and Nzara, all in Greater Equatoria.
        The leaders were Gen. Ejidio Tafeng and Gwatala, all Equatoria and the politicians responsible who were arrested and those sentenced to fire-squad were Equatorians. I hope you still remember some great Equatorian called Gen. Joseph Lagu?

      • Francis mangok says:

        Yien Mathew,

        In 1991 one of our elders from Nasir said to Dr. Riek Macha , Riek you would never win this war against Jieeng and Jieeng would never win the war against Nuer because you are brothers and sisters. No peaceful government without Nuer and Jieeng. South Sudan will be independence if you unity and fight one enemy instead of killing one another. Killing one another would never make us brothers and sisters in South Sudan, but love, peace and unity it could.

        As independent thinker, I think you politicians need to learn how to understand one another in politically, but not in war and killing. I am totally against political violence because it will cause destruction and killing innocents civilians. Look how many innocents people died during this senseless war in our country. Today Western Equatorians are doing unusually activities because they are getting confuse again by those who are against peace and stability in our country. Please make a peace, our country will be one of the richests country in the world if you live in peace. Do not let be confused again by the enemies of peace in South Sudan. God bless you all.

      • Chol Deng Anyieth says:

        Comrade, Yien Matthew,
        I have been asking some of your fellow rebels-members whenever, I meet them in Nairob or Kampala of your whereabouts but it is good that you are alive. At the same time, it is very unfortunate that you reduced yourself to a level of a tribal minded person of Riek. Riek Machar always use tribal line to culminate into power whenever he lost position. Equatorian people are peace lovers and are civilized than any other tribe in South Sudan. The level of literacy in Equatoria region is higher than other regions and that is why the Equatorians always balance the outcome of every action they want to take. They care for the well-being of their fellow citizens. They are not coward. Waging war against your own countrymen and woman does not make you a states man but destruction to the country. Kindly thank Equatorians for being peaceful people.

  2. Francis Mangok,
    Remember Governor Bakosoro is innocent until proven otherwise. If you can recall, Bakosoro was the most performing governor in South Sudan until we was relieved from his duty out of fear of his rising popularity and contemporary mind. Since then he was detained and he was released only after protest from Equatorian MPS. He was released even without any charge, his passport confiscated, harassed, and continued to be monitored by the security forces, and he never left the country. Tell us what crime has Governor Bakosoro committed? If Equatoria (WE) will secede from the rest of South Sudan, it is not because the people has light skin, but because of incompetent government in Juba and ugly behavior of the Dinka in the country.

    Again the arrest of Dr. Lens A.Onek of Juba University is another indication of Dinka ploy against Equatoria intellectuals. Professors are to teach student facts of life because education is a process to prepare young generation for the future responsibilities. The future of our country revolts around teachers and professors in our institutions of higher education. How long do we want to send our children to study in Uganda and Kenya?. Suppose Kenya and Uganda arrest their professors as we do where do you think your children could for education? And to arrest the only experience Scientist like Professor Lens Onek shows how desperate and ignorant our government is. Dr. Luka Biong was butted and professor Laku was also arrested and detained. Very sad indeed for South Sudan.

    If the president wasn’t to arrest bad people, he should arrest Paul Malong and Makwai Lweith. These are war mongers, they have disrespected the president time and time again. They walked out of his face, disobeyed his orders, and they implicate the president’s agenda. Since they are Dinka, nothing is done to them and they continued to serve the president that they even hate without impunity. Paul Malong and Makwei Lweith are the two notorious guys that their arrest and detention is long overdue. Please, leave Governor Bakosoro alone and professor Lens Onek to continue doing their jobs. Mr. Mangok, the problem is clear, and please don’t blame our women for bleaching their skin for nothing. Just pray to God the almighty to help our nation from disintegration into tribal kingdoms, it is something that is very inevitable.

    • Yien Mathew says:

      Hi Francis Mangok and other Commentators,
      This is the end of war but the war of words with equatorians will never end.The wil continue making noise with in and in the diaspora.How can some body in London talk about the release of criminal in prison here in South Sudan.We Nuers were fighting for a really change for all but Clement Wani the former Govnor told his fellows equatorians to keep off it is a war between Dinka and Nuer and to our surprise he send his son to joint us in the bush.We ask his son why do you joint us in the bush he reply my father Clement told me to joint you,we realize that he got no motive to join but he was just told to join us,from there it came to our scene that Equatorians are the most weak people on earth.When Konga was relieved by the president we enjoin it bse he does not deserve to continue as the Governor of Central Equatoria State.Some body describe me here ignorance but he did not write his name that is why we said Equarorians are weak and wicked.The Equatorian moment that you are talking was only for politicians but no young men who turn up to fight the war.Politicians can not go to front line to fight but the youngsters.I repeat Bokosoro and yr Prof. deserve death. Today we Nuers have already united with our brothers Dinkas and soon u will see a change.
      Best regards,
      Comrade Yien Mathew

      • Eastern says:


        You will be rudely awoken that Equatorians are not the people you think they are; its best to think first before you write! There’s no decisive victory for any armed struggle in the world of today; Dr Macher is aware of this fact leading to you the pro-war zealots to call him names. You need to engage you enemies intellectually than mobilise hapless village folks to be mowed by machine guns in the battlefields for wars non can win!!!! Do you want to see what befell the ill trained villagers (so-called white army) from Nuer heartland as they ‘advanced’ on Juba?

        If Dr Garang chose the option of fighting Sudan government in the battlefields do you think there will be South Sudan today? It was his intellectual prowess that endeared him to the West lending them the credence of the SPLA armed struggle.

        Yien, the one reason we continue to have problems in South Sudan is the type on mindset people like you have: you are either with us or you are against us!! Your kind of thinking is very unhelpful at all.

        Equatorians and any other South Sudanese will continue to speak out about any poor governance during or after the forthcoming administration.

    • Francis mangok says:


      Louis Lopbong and Rizik Zachariah are example of innocents South Sudanese Governors since their appointment and I truly appreciate their services. They are deserving long term governorship. You know l am not a politician, but I love to see our leaders respect their government leadership. I do not take me wrong, they have right to ask their government when he is doing wrong, but not to mobilize and revolutionize against the government they are serving. In the government, I love to see everybody has to face the justice. It says in the Bible if you believe in God or work in the government you have to commit to authority.

      Backbitting, discouraging and revolutionary against government will never make us to learn and develop. Yes, government of South Sudan is not perfect, but leaders have to sit and talk instead of running to the bush and begin to kill innocents.
      As independence thinker, I think backbitting and standing against our government is not useful because South Sudan is belonging to all of us and everyone has opportunity to rule.

      I used to supported Governor Bakosoro, but I quitted him when he begins his unusually activities against the government because I am against revolution. I love political nonviolence than political violence. We are independent why do we keep fight and kill one another? We have a country we fought for many years, let us leave behind the primitives politic. War against our government is not the best opion I think. Anyway, I am not against Equatorian leaders and intellectuals, but I am against those who use political violence in the government. Take care Mr.

      • Francis Mangok,
        Leadership of the country is not a kind of commanded that is given to Moses by God. All of us needs changes in our lives for the better. Even Salva Kiir said that, the CPA “is not a Bible and it is not a Koran,” that means it can be changed. That mean leadership, power, authority etc are not Biblical/Koranic all can be changed. On the contrary however, it was Salva Kiir himself who refused to change, but he wants others to change, very funny indeed. Yes, I greed with you, the leadership of the country is not perfect but how long will it take to perfect it? A child may stumble to walk for sometimes but he/she perfect it immediately when she/he realizes that there is force of gravitation. Look at out country, it is going from bad to worst, where does our government wants us to go, to exiles again?. My friend, when your children cry that something is wrong you needs to fix it immediately, it shows concern for their well-being. The government should not force its bad policies through the throats of the nation, it makes people vomits. Although I don’t support arms struggles against our own people, I think there are better reasons why some people took to the bush. If intellect fails, it always forces others to take arms. Besides, those whose opinion were not compromised, they did not even go to the bush, but yet they were arrested and detained. Why were they arrested if you say that you support “independent thinking?” Why arrest independent thinkers?. May be independent thinkers in your opinion are only Dinkas, and not Equatorian. Please, don’t support incompetent government that consumes its own people, and when you do so because a Dinka is at the helm, our nation suffer greatly.

  3. Francis mangok says:

    Yien Mathew,

    Good to heard the word unity and peace brother. In the beginning until today I am still preaching love, peace and unity for our people. Regarding the brothers Equatorians in prison, l do not want to use the word death, but justice. Whoever against our country sovereignty and regulations has to face the justice.

    As independence thinker, I love to see South Sudanese politicians and other institutions to respect the laws in South Sudan without doing this our country would never be stable brothers. We also have to respect our government because he is our representative. Whoever will go to come to the power has to be respect and honor.

    We are brothers and sisters we need to love one another. Our Equatorians brothers and sisters have to know that we love them even though they did not contribute and participate too much during the liberation let welcome them with open hearts because we are all South Sudanese. Leaders sacrifices themselves for others. Only what we need from our Equatorians brothers and sisters is the word of thank because we lost the big number of people during the liberation movement than they do.

    Thank you for being honest, keep the peace for our children and women. Finally, I am not very happy because we lost too much people because of this senseless war which I do not really support. God bless South Sudanese children and women under trees in South Sudan and neighbors countries.Merry Christmas and Happy New Year for them.

    • Yien Mathew says:

      Hi Eastern,
      The word Eastern u used as yr name is not a name of a human but for coward Equatorian. Why not you write yr real name? When we were in the bush one Nuer general told me when you are planning for a war and Equatorians are there do not think that you are with men. There is no difference between a wife one marries and with them, but you will find many of them complaining but yet claiming the sweat of others.
      Mr Eastern or whatever coward name you have, stop making noises. Yr senior equatorian Lado Gore who claims to be representing you in Addis hotel, in Ethiopia is now hoping to come and occupy a big post for you. What a shame getting it without sweat!!!!
      Comrade Yien

  4. Mackoi Mayen says:

    I salute you Mr. Yien Matthew. You are a brave man. Many of us jubilated last year when you were appointed the SPLA IO spokesperson though we were not rebel supporters. But we also panicked because your appointment was a statement of intent from riek that he would surely bring down the elected govt. You are a man of stamina and determination. This war that has killed thousands of Nuers and Dinkas was not triggered by ourselves but by the coward equatorians who promised to support dinka and nuer should we start the war. I must admit that we were foolish enough to concede to their deceit. When we were in the middle of madness, they started disowning us and called it a Jieng vs Naath tribes. We are the same in very aspect and manner. We brought the independence of this nation. The only person who is like this Equatorians is Dr. Machar. Now that we are united, lets turn and see our enemy, the equatorian. These cowards want us to wipe ourselves out of the faith of the earth so that they take over the country. That’s what they called having brains. Yien I thought you were not aware of this. The behavior demonstrated by Lul Ruai, Clement Wani and Bakosoro deserves nothing but punishment. You can’t be an informant within a system you worked for. I once espoused on this very website that this stupid tribe called equatorian is nothing but a bunched of cowards. Lets face this monster called equatoria

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